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Old 09-17-2008, 10:17 PM   #1
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NYT & Parchment Paper Tutorial

No Knead Bread & Parchment Paper
By: Joe Valencic, Mentor, Ohio

I see this topic come up frequently, especially when someone is being challenged by handling this very loose dough. Some folks can understand a verbal description of using parchment paper, but some need to SEE what is being explained in order to fully understand. Iím a person who likes lots of pictures to make sure Iím doing things as described, and for those of you who are like me, hereís a short tutorial on working with parchment paper and no-knead bread dough.

I mainly work with round baking vessels for this bread, but I do own one La Cloche Oblong Clay Baker. Here are two of my many choices for baking vessels, and the proofing baskets I use for them. Notice how the baskets are similar in size to the baking dishes. This is important so that the proofed dough is not larger than its baking vessel.



I take a sheet of parchment paper and work it into the basket, being careful to fit it closely to the inside of the basket. Once Iím happy with the paper placement, I trim off the excess so that there is about 2Ē of paper left over the basket edge for lifting the proofed dough. I then spray a liberal coating of cooking spray on the parchment paper to prevent the dough from sticking to the paper. Shape the dough and then drop it in the basket and cover with plastic to rise for about 60 minutes.



Once the dough has risen and is ready for the oven, I like to Ďdress upí my No-Knead bread with a good topping of 10-grain cereal. I take a spray bottle of water and wet the top of the dough so the grain will stick, then sprinkle a liberal amount of cereal on top of the loaf. You could also use wheat bran, oatmeal or other toppings that you enjoy.





Youíre now ready to put the dough in the cooking vessel. Just lift the dough by the parchment paper edges and place the whole thing into your pot. Put on the cover and bake as usual. To save energy I like to bake two loaves at a time. The dissimilar shapes work very well for this, but I can also fit two round baking dishes in my oven. If doing this, make sure there is at least 1Ē between vessels and away from walls so the air can circulate around the pots in the oven.



When the bread is done remove the pan from the oven using long oven mitts. Donít try to lift the bread by the parchment paper, because it will just fall apart in your hands.



Tip the bread out of the pan using the oven mitts and place on a wire rack to cool. For best results, allow bread to cool for at least two hours before cutting.
If you did it all correctly, you will be left with beautiful, delicious bread and a shell of parchment paper to throw away.





I hope this makes your No-Knead baking experience more enjoyable.

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Old 09-17-2008, 10:55 PM   #2
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have to admit i had a bit of trouble with the paper. thanks for the pictures.

babe
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Old 09-18-2008, 12:01 AM   #3
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Excellent tutorial!
Thanks for taking all those great photos, it does make it so much easier to understand.
I can't wait to try it your technique.
I will call the bread a "Valencic Loaf"
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Old 09-18-2008, 12:14 AM   #4
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I have baked for a long time and never once thought of doing what you did.
Kudo's for the great set of pics. I am going to do this real soon
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Old 09-18-2008, 04:07 AM   #5
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Outstanding post. Thanks!
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Old 09-18-2008, 06:52 AM   #6
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Yeah, that makes a lot more sense than setting your dough on a floured towel and flopping it into the cooking vessel.

Joe, do you preheat your cooking vessels?
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Old 09-18-2008, 06:58 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave Hutchins View Post
I have baked for a long time and never once thought of doing what you did.
Dave,

I'm a fly fisherman and fly tier, and we do these Step-by-Step photo tutorials all the time as a means of showing people what the fly should look like at each point in the tying process, and to use verbage with the picture to describe any intricate steps. I just applied it to my bread baking hobby.

I have to also say that I was inspired to do this after reading that LadyCook61 is deaf, and could not hear what was being said in the You-Tube video about French Bread, and the video did not have a subtitle for the hearing impaired. I thought about doing a video on parchment paper, but then realized I would have to learn some things in the video editting that I don't already know, and I just don't have time right now to play with it because my business is very busy. This was the next best thing to do for now.

Hopefully I can do more of these this winter when time allows. I believe they are really helpful for many people.

JoeV
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Old 09-18-2008, 07:05 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pacanis View Post
Yeah, that makes a lot more sense than setting your dough on a floured towel and flopping it into the cooking vessel.

Joe, do you preheat your cooking vessels?
I'm glad that helped. I used to do the floured towels, then went to plastic wrap lined towels, and I think this is the best way to accomplish what I'm after for handling the dough. There's nothing wrong with the other ways, and you don't have the expense of the parchment sheets, but I think this is just easier.

Yes, I preheat for at least 30 minutes. When I cover the dough for the second proofing, I set the timer on the microwave for 60 minutes, then set the timer on the stove for 30 minutes, which lets me know it's time to preheat the oven. If I don't have two timers going I get sidetracked and forget to preheat the over. It's the old walking and chewing gum thing for me.

JoeV
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Old 09-18-2008, 07:20 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JoeV View Post
I'm glad that helped. I used to do the floured towels, then went to plastic wrap lined towels, and I think this is the best way to accomplish what I'm after for handling the dough. There's nothing wrong with the other ways, and you don't have the expense of the parchment sheets, but I think this is just easier.

Yes, I preheat for at least 30 minutes. When I cover the dough for the second proofing, I set the timer on the microwave for 60 minutes, then set the timer on the stove for 30 minutes, which lets me know it's time to preheat the oven. If I don't have two timers going I get sidetracked and forget to preheat the over. It's the old walking and chewing gum thing for me.

JoeV
So you preheat the cooking vesssels, too, like the original NYT recipe calls for?
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Old 09-18-2008, 07:23 AM   #10
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Yep. I read recently where someone claims that you don't need to pre heat, but I need to look into that more. Right now I have to head out to the jobsite.
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